Pumpkin Processing

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Do you have some left-over pumpkins? Don’t throw them out. Cook them. They make the most delicious pumpkin pie.

Stab it a few times with a knife around the top. Put it in a glass dish and pop it in the microwave for 20 to 30 minutes. Take it out and let it cool.

Cut it in half, dig out the seeds, then scoop out the meat. Blend it in the food processor until it’s smooth.

Put 1 1/2 cups in freezer bags until you’re ready to make the pie. When you’re ready to make the pie follow these directions:

Thaw 1 ½ cups of pumpkin
Add ¾ cups sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ to 1 ¼ teaspoons cinnamon
½ to 1 teaspoon ginger
¼ to ½ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ to ½ teaspoon cloves
3 slightly beaten eggs
1 ¼ cups milk
1 6-ounce can evaporated milk
1 9-inch unbaked pastry shell

Thoroughly combine the pumpkin, sugar, salt, and spices. Blend in eggs, milk, and evaporated milk. Pour into unbaked pastry shell (have edges crimped high—filling is generous). Bake in hot oven (400 degrees) 50 minutes, or until knife inserted halfway between center and outside comes out clean. Cool.

If you have trouble making pie crust, my cookbook Family Favorites from the Heartland has a pie dough that’s as easy to roll out as play dough, but tastes heavenly.

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